Iraqi compensation
January 9, 2006 5:11 PM   Subscribe

This fellow is interested in getting together a push to have Iraqis compensated along the lines established by the UNCC. Ideas, suggestions? How to proceed?
posted by Wolof to Law & Government (18 answers total)
Look, here's a brief primer in how the world works: might makes right.

Country at fault: Iraq.
Country which lost the war: Iraq
Country which ends up paying reparations: Iraq

Country at fault: USA
Country which lost the war: Iraq
Country going to pay reparations: Iraq's probably going to end up paying the U.S. reparations.
posted by jellicle at 6:11 PM on January 9, 2006

Well, there are various potential tracks here. One would be ad-hoc -- it's my understanding that there is already a degree of ad-hoc claims handling by the Coalition, at least (or particularly) in the case of civilian deaths, and in some limited cases for property damage. But the amounts vary and are small. I'm not certain what sort of record-keeping there is or how this woudl figure into a larger process, either.

The second track is the formal one, which would involve either expanding the UNCC mandate or setting up a parallel commission. Since this would have to be established through a Security Council vote, I can tell you that it's probably politically impossible, since the US has a veto on the council (and of course, Iraq did not). Even if there were UNSC members willing to buck the US on this, the US would just bribe or blackmail them with some backroom deal, or resort to a veto block at last recourse.

That said, the method to proceed is going to have to involve the Iraqi government, since only a member state has standing before the Council. It's possible that a future Iraqi govt would like to undertake this, but I don't see that happening right away -- it would be too awkward. But stranger things have happened. In any case, the proper venue for this is the Iraqi interim legislature.

A third way would be for a group of Iraqis to bring a lawsuit in the United States. Such lawsuits have been tried before, and there are probably a very limited number of law firms which have even slightly related experience. I would look at, for example, the Aceh citizens who sued in the US over ExxonMobil's activities which were protected ... rather aggressively ... by Indonesian security forces.
posted by dhartung at 7:51 PM on January 9, 2006

hello everybody, this is Raed Jarrar ... The "fellow" that came up with the above idea!

thank you for your ideas. I'm trying not to market the project as a "punishment" for the US... On the contrary, it should be marketed as an investment for peace building.

Compensation to Iraq will make us all live in peace and will prevent any future excuses for attacks against anyone.
posted by raed jarrar at 8:26 PM on January 9, 2006 [1 favorite]


you make sense, and what you said sounds like the logic of the administration, more or less.

Do you think this "winner" vs. "loser" game is going to stop futue hate against the coalition countries?

What I'm trying to do is to help the US fix the mistakes done in Iraq so that everyone can start on a new page and forget the tragic occupation days...
posted by raed jarrar at 8:30 PM on January 9, 2006

The US is attempting to fix the mistakes that have been made in Iraq. The problem is that the country is not secure. Until that happens, throwing money at the problem is not going to help. Do you have a plan for supplying security?
posted by austin5000 at 9:13 PM on January 9, 2006

Yes. A great plan.

pull out al the troops ASAP!

We should leave Iraqis handle the situation by themselves by giving Iraq back to the elected Iraqi government, the same thing the brits are doing now.

Iraqis will work together in solving the security issue, and it shouldn't be the US problem anymore.

pullout the troops, apologise, and start paying compensation via UNCC
posted by raed jarrar at 9:25 PM on January 9, 2006

From 'The Claims' page of the UNCC site: All of the filing deadlines have now expired with the exception of claims put forward on behalf of missing persons and claims for damage and losses resulting from land mine or ordnance explosions.

The deadline for filing passed 10 years ago. I followed the link to the guy's blog, on the assumption that the link to the blog would have some relevance, only to discover that I have no interest in reading about other peoples' haircuts. I get the icky feeling that this compensation thing is a scheme somewhere between hopeless naivety and cynical traffic generation.

austin5000 is absolutely right about the security situation. The problem is that there is a civil war happening in Iraq. Money should be the least of the Iraqi peoples' worries. First security has to be established, then basic infrastructure has to be put in place. Once the basics for a decent standard of a living have been provided, then maybe we can start to think about exporting the compensation culture to the Mid-East.

Also, anybody that claims that the complete and immediate withdrawal of coalition forces from Iraq would be good for Iraqis, is delusional.
posted by veedubya at 9:33 PM on January 9, 2006

"along the lines established by the UNCC" -- please read the question.
posted by Wolof at 9:37 PM on January 9, 2006


1- You should read more before writing. You should have scrolled down to read my post about the compensation, it's right under the hair cut one (btw, did you like my skinhead?)

2- What do you mean that "anybody" who claims that the withdrawal of occupation forces would be good for Iraqis is selusional? Are you the spokesman of Iraqis or what?

I AM an Iraqi, and I won't produce such a sharp statement!

The US troops should leave the country alone to let Iraqis rule their country... don't you believe in democracy and freedom veeW?
posted by raed jarrar at 9:42 PM on January 9, 2006

ahhh.. and that thing about the UNCC, read the site to understand that it's just for the compensation PAID BY IRAQ to KUWAIT.

The new NCC like organization should organiza the payments TO IRAQ.

posted by raed jarrar at 9:44 PM on January 9, 2006

raed jarrar, I read as much as I could stomach. Maybe it's because I'm turned off by badly written rants, but the only references to compensation that I could see were a couple of throwaway sentences containing no information whatsoever.

I'm about as much a spokesman for the Iraqi people as you are, which is to say, not at all.

There's a delicious irony in somebody claiming to be Iraqi and claiming to care about the Iraqi people, whilst calling for the withdrawal of American troops from Iraq, and doing it from America. You should eat your own dogfood. I suggest that you pack your bags, book yourself on the next flight to Baghdad and get thee hence back to Iraq.
posted by veedubya at 9:59 PM on January 9, 2006


My project of paying compensation to Iraq is based on the idea of concidering compensation as an investment for long term peace keeping.

People in Iraq will be happy with all the money, and start working on projects and build their country instead of thinking of hate and calling for revenge, and people in the US (including myself) will have a better life and safer future. It's very important to enhance the international image of the US, and this compensation project is a good first step in that.
posted by raed jarrar at 10:13 PM on January 9, 2006

I had some very good feedback from different readers and friends about how to start the project's website, but I still need more ideas about safe hosting and web-designing.

Where should I start in searching for a good server, and where can I find good web-designers?
posted by raed jarrar at 10:55 PM on January 9, 2006

[a few comments removed -- please keep responses on-topic or take it to metatalk or email ]
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 7:12 AM on January 10, 2006

WRT your hosting request: I'm not exactly certain what you're looking for, and what level of hand-holding you'll need, but the posts tagged 'Hosting' here on AskMeFi should provide some guidance.
posted by Orb2069 at 5:20 PM on January 10, 2006

raed, I am happy you have come to MetaFilter and I am surprised and disappointed that you encountered hostility. Many people must not know that you are the Raed from the world-famous Where Is Raed? blog written by your friend [e.g.] Salam Pax -- and that you are in the United States to get an architectural degree (unless I'm mistaken about that). I know, for instance, that you were in Jordan during the war, and in Iraq very shortly after the invasion looking into civilian casualties. You've certainly done the legwork that veedubya, I suspect, has not.

As far as moving this to hosting and website discussions, you should probably think more about what you want to do and ask those questions separately, keeping the political aspects out of that discussion. Do you want a web forum? A blog? A wiki? Look at the existing community sites and consider how much motivation you have. Maybe all you want is a topical blog where a few people have posting privileges. A wiki for brainstorming sure would be nice, though. Anyway, answer those questions for yourself and you can ask a better question.

Anyway, I think it would be interesting if a group of Iraqis were to bring a compensation request before Congress. That is a fourth option I should have mentioned. Stay away from the fringe people, go for a mainstream Representative or Senator if you can. Somebody like Conyers, Kucinich, or even Russ Feingold.
posted by dhartung at 11:59 PM on January 10, 2006

And a fair warning: I have seen your request at this very right-wing blog with the comment that you have been "reported to Homeland Security" for starting this project.

I am very sorry to tell you that they will probably investigate, meaning you will have to answer questions from federal agents. I sincerely hope this does not impair your freedom to live in the United States.

It is very ironic that the people who shout the loudest that they are working for the freedoms of the Iraqi people are also the fastest to find ways to impair that freedom, when the speech is not to their liking.
posted by dhartung at 12:04 AM on January 11, 2006

Dan -- thanks for your help.
posted by Wolof at 3:53 AM on January 11, 2006

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